In many ways, COVID-19 was the perfect guise for corporate greed to flourish and try to abandon our communities. In the early stages of the pandemic, the University of Missouri-Columbia attempted to privatize, outsource, or cut more than 300 custodial and landscaping jobs for the sake of alleged budget concerns. MOJWJ and LiUNA 955 organized the Stop the Cuts Coalition to bring community members together to stand with these workers and point out the dangers of privatization – especially from our state’s flagship public university.
Over the course of 73 days, MO JWJ and members wrote numerous letters to the editor, passed resolutions at Mizzou, marched on campus, and protested at Jesse Hall and administration offices to demand that custodial and landscaping jobs were protected.
Despite threats from the administration about these protests being “disruptive” – the MU administration finally announced they would not outsource or cut custodial or landscaping positions.
This campaign, along with the previous year’s fight for a living wage, shows that when workers and their neighbors stand together – we win.